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Rick Ross assassination attempt might have links to Gangster Disciples
Jan-30-2013 517 0


There is no shortage of suspects in Monday's assassination attempt on well-known rap star Rick Ross. And they all lead back to Chicago.

Ross survived a shooting ambush in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Monday morning.

The worst kept secret in the rap world has been a dispute between Ross and the Chicago-based Gangster Disciples. Ross was apparently targeted by gang leaders after he used some of their signs, symbols and logos without paying them the required fees.

Over the past few months, gang members have posted video death threats against the rapper on YouTube. Monday, a hit squad opened fire on Ross in South Florida.

There was a spray of gunfire just before daybreak on the silver Rolls Royce being driven by rapper Rick Ross, stage name for William L. Roberts.

"Nine or 10 shots, rapid fire," said a witness. "AK-47 or pretty large rifle, it was definitely a rifle."

Fort Lauderdale police tell the I-Team that they cannot confirm nor dismiss whether the allege threats to the rap star are legitimate but that detectives are examining the forensic evidence.

Despite all the bullets, rapper Ross, celebrating his 37th birthday Monday, was not hurt and neither was his girlfriend in the car, which crashed into an apartment.

Videos claiming to have been posted by Gangster Disciple members in cities across the U.S. all say that the rapper needs to pay the gang or he will be killed.

Authorities in South Florida say the motive for the attack is unclear.

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ITAY HOD Jan-14-2017 118 0
Jennifer Holliday has canceled her appearance at Donald Trump's inauguration event next week, calling her decision to perform a "lapse of judgement."

In an open letter, provided exclusively to TheWrap, the "Dreamgirls" star apologized to the LGBT community, saying she was "uneducated on the issues that affect every American at this crucial time in history and for causing such dismay and heartbreak to my fans."

The Tony and Grammy winner came under fire from some of her fans on Friday after it was announced that she was set to perform at a concert as part of Trump's inauguration festivities.

Holliday, considered a longtime LGBT ally, explained that she changed her mind after reading a Friday Daily Beast story titled, "Jennifer Holliday Will Perform at Trump's Inauguration, Which Is Heartbreaking to Gay Fans."

The article argued that the singer's decision to participate in the inaugural event was "an act that seems to defy everything her most passionate supporters stand for, and even issues she herself has supported throughout her career."

"My only choice must now be to stand with the LGBT Community and to state unequivocally that I WILL NOT PERFORM FOR THE WELCOME CONCERT OR FOR ANY OF THE INAUGURATION FESTIVITIES!"

Holliday ends her letter telling her gay fans: "Please know that I HEAR YOU and I feel your pain. The LGBT Community was mostly responsible for birthing my career and I am deeply indebted to you... You have loved me faithfully and unconditionally and for so many years you provided me with work even though my star had long since faded."

On Friday, Trump's inauguration team announced that she would perform, along with Toby Keith, 3 Doors Down, Lee Greenwood and other entertainers, in a Jan. 19 event at the Lincoln Memorial called the "Make America Great Again! Welcome Celebration."

Many fans were surprised by the inclusion of Holliday, best known as the original Effie White in Broadway's original production of "Dreamgirls."

Holliday told the New York Times that she had been "startled and disheartened" by the "venom that greeted the news of her participation."

According to the Times, Holliday "sounded certain about her choice." But her publicist Bill Carpenter later told TheWrap that she had not yet committed to the event, eventually confirming her participation a few hours later.

Read Holliday's full letter below.

TO MY BELOVED LGBT COMMUNITY:

Please allow me this opportunity to speak to you directly and to explain why I originally made my decision to perform at the inauguration which was what I had thought would be my simply keeping in my tradition of being a "bi-partisan songbird" having sung for Presidents Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Bush.

I was asked to sing a song for what was presented to me as the "Welcome Concert For The People"- in my mind I was reflecting on the past times of being asked to sing for presidents and I only focused on the phrase "For The People"... I thought, For America!

I was honestly just thinking that I wanted my voice to be a healing and unifying force for hope through music to help our deeply polarized country... Regretfully, I did not take into consideration that my performing for the concert would actually instead be taken as a political act against my own personal beliefs and be mistaken for support of Donald Trump and Mike Pence.

In light of the information pointed out to me via the Daily Beast article on yesterday, my only choice must now be to stand with the LGBT Community and to state unequivocally that I WILL NOT PERFORM FOR THE WELCOME CONCERT OR FOR ANY OF THE INAUGURATION FESTIVITIES!

I sincerely apologize for my lapse of judgement, for being uneducated on the issues that affect every American at this crucial time in history and for causing such dismay and heartbreak to my fans.

Please know that I HEAR YOU and I feel your pain. The LGBT Community was mostly responsible for birthing my career and I am deeply indebted to you... You have loved me faithfully and unconditionally and for so many years you provided me with work even though my star had long since faded.

Thank you for communicating with me, I had no idea that I still meant so much to all of you.

Thank you for your posted comments both the good supportive ones as well as the ugly hurtful ones.

With LOVE & Appreciation,

JENNIFER HOLIDAY

"The Original DreamGirl"
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MICHAEL PAULSON Jan-13-2017 78 0
Jennifer Holliday sang for the Reagans. She sang for the Bushes (father and son). And she sang for the Clintons.

So when the planners of this year’s presidential inauguration reached out to the Tony-winning singer this week to ask if she would sing during a welcome concert the day before Donald J. Trump is to be sworn in as president, she said yes.

“I’m singing on the mall for the people,” she said. “I don’t have a dog in this fight — I’m just a singer, and it’s a welcome concert for the people on the mall.”

Ms. Holliday, speaking during a telephone interview Friday afternoon, said she had not supported Mr. Trump’s candidacy — “I voted for Mrs. Clinton, and they knew that.” But, she said, “if someone wants me to sing a national anthem or something, we think about America, and we go.”

Ms. Holliday sounded certain about her choice, but her spokesman, William Carpenter, suggested in a subsequent email that the decision was not set in stone. “I just spoke to her and she still hadn’t made up her mind about doing the event,” he wrote.

Ms. Holliday is a Broadway icon, renowned for her performance as Effie in the original cast of “Dreamgirls,” and she returned to Broadway this year as a replacement Shug Avery in the revival of “The Color Purple.” The final performance of that show was Sunday, and the Clintons were in the audience.

Ms. Holliday said she was asked on Wednesday if she would sing at the concert scheduled for Jan. 19, and she agreed, seeing the request as similar to those she received to sing at the White House during past Republican and Democratic presidencies. “I just thought of the history part of it, and about singing on the mall where Marian Anderson paved the way for me to sing as a black American,” she said, referring to a 1939 concert that Ms. Anderson, a popular singer, performed from the Lincoln Memorial after being denied permission to sing at Constitution Hall because she was black.

Ms. Holliday said she had been startled and disheartened on Friday by the venom that greeted the news of her participation.

“It brought a lot of threats from people already saying I’ll never work again,” she said. “If that’s what America has come to, where we all hate and bully people, there’s no more freedom of speech.”

She added, “I know everybody hates me now, but that shows we are all just hateful people now — we don’t even want to work together.”

And, she said, “If it’s the end of everything for me, then it has to be the end of everything for me. I would hope that’s not how it ends up, but right now I would like to be a part of a welcoming part of America. If we’re only going to let Trump be the face of America, I say let’s not let him be the only face of America — someone else could stand and show a light of love or hope or forgiveness.”

She noted that the Carters and the Clintons, as well as the Obamas, are expected at the inauguration.

“We’ve become such a polarized country — we’re not listening to what the Obamas have said,” she said. “They told us to move forward with hope — they didn’t tell us to stop participating — I didn’t hear that in Obama’s speech.”

Ms. Holliday said she did not see herself, or her singing, as political, a sentiment echoed by Jackie Evancho, the 16-year-old classical-crossover singer who will perform the national anthem at Mr. Trump’s inauguration on Jan. 20.

“I just kind of thought that this is for my country,” Ms. Evancho said. “So if people are going to hate on me it’s for the wrong reason.”

Ms. Holliday said her goal is to support America: “Are we saying that if there is anything that could be done for America in four or eight years or however long Trump is there, we’re not supposed to participate or help anybody?” she asked. “Shouldn’t we all be praying for the success of America? I would like to sing some hope and have my voice not be associated with some kind of label, but I guess that’s where we are now.”

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AP Jan-07-2017 75 0
An inventory of Prince's estate submitted to a probate court in Minnesota shows he had acquired tens of millions of dollars' worth of real estate and other personal property before he died last year.

The Star Tribune reports that much of the value of his estate hasn't been established yet, including unreleased recordings and videos from his vault.

Prince died of an accidental overdose of the painkiller fentanyl. He did not leave a will. His estate has been valued at between $100 million and $300 million, before taxes.

Carver County District Court records show that an asset inventory lists a dozen properties with an estimated value of $25.4 million, as well as about $110,000 in four bank accounts and 67 10-ounce gold bars with a total value of nearly $840,000.
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Alexia Fernandez Jan-04-2017 181 0
A fight erupted at the funeral of Everybody Hates Chris actor Ricky Harris on Tuesday, and a shocked Sherri Shepherd witnessed the whole thing.

“I can’t believe they’re fighting at a funeral!” Shepherd, 49, could be heard saying in the background as she filmed from the outside of the funeral home.

According to Shepherd, someone inside the funeral home went after Snoop Dogg (who was a childhood friend of Harris’s) and Snoop’s bodyguard tackled him.

“It’s so disrespectful. So disrespectful to his memory,” Shepherd said.

Shepherd later posted a second video, along with the caption, “Everything is fine.”

Harris died in December at the age of 54. Harris sang in a church choir with Snoop when they were younger — and would go on to collaborate on Snoop’s 1993 Doggystyle, where Harris provided a hilarious and racy commentary on the track “W-Balls.”

Perhaps most memorable was Harris’ recurring role in the hit UPN/CW comedy Everybody Hates Chris. There, he played the neighborhood ne’er-do-well Malvo — an often foe of Chris Rock‘s childhood counterpart.

Harris is survived by his mother, ex-wife and two daughters.
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AP Jan-04-2017 46 0
A memorable contestant in the first season of The Apprentice, Manigault is expected to join President-elect Donald Trump's White House staff, according to two people familiar with the decision. Her job is expected to focus on public engagement.

Manigault was one of Trump's most prominent African-American supporters during the campaign and has been working with his transition team. This will be her second tour of duty at the White House - she worked in the office of Vice President Al Gore during the Clinton Administration.

The Trump transition team did not respond to inquiries about Manigault's role. The two people familiar with the decision insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the hiring process publicly.
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Kevin McCoy Dec-29-2016 106 0
Amazon, Walmart and other retailers are being sued for $50 million for allegedly infringing on the trademark of iconic rap and hip-hop group RUN-DMC.

The stores "are trading on the goodwill" of the band and confusing consumers by "advertising, manufacturing, selling and distributing multiple products" that erroneously imply the group endorsed the merchandise, according to the lawsuit filed Thursday in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Examples include old-school black-frame glasses often sported by Darryl McDaniels — best known to fans and music lovers as DMC — one of the band's founders and the trademark's owner, the lawsuit charged. He owns 200 pairs of similar glasses, "the better to see what's going on in the world," according to an entry on the band's official website. 

An exhibit filed with the court complaint also showed shirts, hats and other merchandise like some worn by McDaniels, Joseph "Reverend Run" Simmons, and Jason "Jam Master J" Mizell when the trio shot to music and cultural stardom from their 1980s start in the Hollis, Queens neighborhood of New York City.

The band members, inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009 for a string of hits that include "It's Like That," "My Adidas," and "You Be Illin," no longer perform together but are widely considered as rap elder statesmen. Mizell died in an unsolved 2002 shooting. 

"The number of infringing materials" allegedly marketed and sold by the companies "are too numerous to properly list," according to the lawsuit, which alleged the retailers' actions have "harmed RUN-DMC in its business."

Along with Amazon and Walmart, the court complaint targets retailers Jet.com, Vision World, Infinity Fashion and SW Global. All are Amazon business partners, the lawsuit alleges.

The companies either could not be reached or did not immediately respond to messages seeking comment on the lawsuit. Christopher Brown, a Boston-based attorney who filed the case, similarly did not return a message seeking comment.
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Michael Ausiello Dec-12-2016 108 0
he star and exec producer of Starz’ Power took to social media on Monday following the announcement of the 2017 Golden Globe nominations and expressed fury over the series’ poor showing.

“I’m on the move again,” he wrote. “I accept my series Power was not intended to be a signature show for the network, but it is the highest-rated show.”

The actor-rapper — aka Curtis Jackson — went on to say he’s “done promoting this out side of contractual obligations,” before adding that in the drama’s upcoming fourth season his drug-lord character Kanan “must die.” He then concluded: “I got other s–t to do.”

No comment yet from Starz.
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People Dec-12-2016 109 0
This year’s NBA All-Star game will bring some of the best players in the world to the court — and not just in basketball.

Music all star John Legend, 37, will perform the halftime show of the 66th annual NBA All-Star Game in New Orleans, PEOPLE confirms exclusively.

The Grammy Award-winning artist is on a roll coming off the release of his fifth studio album, Darkness and Light. He can also be seen costarring alongside Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone on the big screen in La La Land.

Sting performed at last year’s All-Star game, and past years have featured halftime show headliners Ariana Grande and Alicia Keys.

The exhibition game, originally scheduled in North Carolina, relocated in response to the state’s “bathroom bill,” or HB2, which prohibits local governments from enacting anti-discrimination measures.

The 2017 NBA All-Star Weekend kicks off Friday, Feb. 17 with the All Star Celebrity Game. Catch the NBA All-Star game itself Sunday, Feb. 19 at the Smoothie King Centre, airing at 8 p.m. on TNT.

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Kate Feldman Nov-29-2016 218 0
Ricky Smith was left in an Olive Garden parking lot after a black waitress said “she doesn’t like serving blacks.”

The comedian claimed late Tuesday night that he was asked to leave the Italian restaurant after requesting a new server.

“Honestly am at a lost for words. Not leaving until the cops come and physically remove us,” Smith tweeted.

He and his friends asked for a different waitress, he said, but were told their “options were to have her as our waitress or leave.”

Smith said he requested a different waitress, but Olive Garden wouldn't oblige.

Smith, who founded the Random Acts of Kindness Everywhere project, then said his group went out into the parking lot of the Olive Garden, but refused to leave until the restaurant called the police.

Olive Garden responded to Smith’s tweets, asking him to direct message the account with more information.

In a statement to the Daily News, the restaurant said all guests are welcome at Olive Garden and they would be investigating the matter.
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